Halitosis is the technical name for bad breath. Halitosis is the third-most-frequent reason for going to the dentist, behind tooth decay and periodontal disease. According to Dr. Ryne Johnson, prosthodontist and director of Newton Wellesley Dental Partners, "The intensity of bad breath changes during the day, because of eating certain foods, obesity, smoking, and alcohol consumption. Bad breath may be transient or persistent. Transient bad breath disappears after eating, brushing, flossing, or rinsing with mouthwash".
Persistent or chronic bad breath is a more serious condition, affecting 25% of the population in varying degrees. At Newton Wellesley Dental Partners, we have some tips for you to rid yourself of bad breath.
Tongue scraping- Bacteria collects on the tissue of your tongue and causes a bad odor. To avoid this, brush your tongue while brushing your teeth with your tooth brush or a tongue scraper.
Regular flossing- Bacteria can colonize in the gums between the teeth and if not removed at least once per day, an unpleasant odor can result. The solution: Floss at least once per day!
Regular hygiene visits- The hygienist uses special instruments to remove plaque and calculus leaving your teeth biologically sound. A toothbrush and floss alone, no matter how frequently used, cannot reach areas that the dental hygienist can. It’s important to attend regular dental hygiene visits to stop periodontal disease from developing.
Regular Dental Exams- Tooth decay is also a form of disease. Bacteria cause the tooth to erode which releases a foul odor. To detect any untreated decay it’s important to come in for a dental exam at least twice per year.
Regular use of alcohol-free mouthwash- Mouthwash helps lower the level of bacteria that causes bad breath. We recommend using alcohol-free mouthwash to prevent from dry-mouth.
Chewing sugar-free gum with xylitol- Chewing gum helps loosen soft depositing that may accumulate on your teeth after eating and in between brushing.
The right toothbrush- An electric toothbrush is far superior in removing the bacterial layer than a manual toothbrush. Use an electric toothbrush and make sure to replace the head every 3 months.
For more information on getting rid of bad breath, contact Newton Wellesley Dental Partners in Newton.